A Blog About My Journey Riding and Training Sora, My Soulmate

Saturday, July 10, 2010

AND in a Nutshell

I was going to write about my incredible evening with Sora but I have work at 1:00 and I'm short on time so I decided to just post what a forum member used to explain AND to someone new. I haven't really explained what AND is and thought that maybe now is the time.

The AND philosophy in a nutshell.

First, there is no set right and wrong, no rigid rules on how you MUST work with your horses. The idea that is supported here is that the needs of the horse come first, and bitless is promoted, but again, it is not dictated. You are free to choose for your horses.

The main theme is that we are all on a learning journey. We must be open to learning from all sources, good or bad. And the primary teacher for all of us is the horse itself.

The idea is that you listen to the horse. You are observant, you watch for signs and signals from the horse that he/she is being stressed and you try to determine the source of the discomfort. You also watch for signs of composure and "happiness" from the horse and take clues from that.

When it comes to encouragement/motivation food is fine, or whatever your horse finds enjoyable. If food is not what you want to use, then experiment with other means...a good scratch, a kind word, whatever your horse finds motivating. Experiment and play.

You are always free to choose what is right for you, and what you feel is right for your horses.

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